By Jeremy Nwachukwu
There is truly a time to die as the first monarch of Mbutu Nweorie people, Eze Sir Michael Nwabueze Opara, said to be a man of peace, has left his people who are now in pains.
Despite the agonies of goodbye, the people of Mbutu Nweorie in Aboh Mbaise local council area of Imo State said they are set to say goodbye to Eze Opara, the Ubaoha 1, who joined his ancestors on November 11, 2020, after protracted illness and hospitalisation.
The Ubaoha 1, a seasoned administrator and entrepreneur who is often described as a pacemaker and father of all, would be remembered for ensuring unity and prosperity in his kingdom during his over 15 years reign.
According to a statement by the President-General, Mbutu Nweorie Development Union, Ezinna Anthony Opara and Chairman of the Central Planning Committee, Pastor Chibuzor Chimezie, high gear of the burial activities commenced on Monday, February 22, 2021 after what the PG called full consultations with the immediate family, kinsmen, community leaders, Ndi Eze, and the various organs of authority in Mbutu Nweorie autonomous community and over all Mbutu Kingdom.
The statement further explained that the concluding activities would include Funeral Mass Service at St Theresa’s Catholic Parish, Mbutu Nweorie with full attendance of the clergy led by Bishops and General Overseers while interment would follow at the royal cemetery at the Ubaoha Palace.
Major highlights of the burial activities would, according to the organizes, involve Lap of Honour, Reception with Farewell Salute at strategic places including Aboh Mbaise Local Council Secretariat and Group School Mbutu, Service of Songs and Night of Tributes, all on Thursday, February 25, 2021 while final goodbye and interment is the next day, Friday, February 26, 2021.
The community hinted that prominent citizens of Mbutu Nweorie both at home and abroad were expected to grace the events while Ndi-Eze, titled men, political leaders and other personalities on their way to Mbutu Nweorie have been assured of safe, orderly and comfortable processes.
The PG however warned that all Covid-19 protocols must be fully observed and enforced, while urging visitors and guests to kindly cooperate.